Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

SEARCH
the Forums & Piano World

This custom search works much better than the built in one and allows searching older posts.
(ad 125) Sweetwater - Digital Keyboards & Other Gear
Digital Pianos at Sweetwater
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad) Pianoteq
Latest Pianoteq add-on instrument: U4 upright piano
(ad) P B Guide
Acoustic & Digital Piano Guide
PianoSupplies.com (150)
Piano Accessories Music Related Gifts Piano Tuning Equipment Piano Moving Equipment
We now offer Gift Certificates in our online store!
(ad) Estonia Piano
Estonia Piano
Quick Links to Useful Stuff
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers
*Organs

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano Accessories
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Piano Books
*Piano Art, Pictures, & Posters
*Directory/Site Map
*Contest
*Links
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Screen Saver
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >
Topic Options
#1982983 - 11/05/12 11:15 AM Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one?
sunslight Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/25/04
Posts: 106
Loc: Provo, Utah, USA
I am having trouble with key dip. Some say measure it at the pin others at the front of the key. And dip block are all over the place where it is measured.

I just got a 3/8 and 13/32 from schaff. These particular ones measure at the front of the key. That gives me what seems really shallow dip. When used, they give me way less depth at the pin than what is stated on the blocks.

I have another block that is 10.5mm at the front of the key, but it gives me much too much at the pin.
It is really frustrating.

When I order a block, I do not know where it is set to measure. and then, is it measuring where the manufacture specifies to check dip?

I just want to set a dip that works well and then I can go from there to get good aftertouch. I like consistent AT (about 1.5mm), and like the feel of constant after touch versus constant dip. of course ideal is to have both consistent.

Opinions?
Is dip measured at the pin or at the front of the key?

Is there a supply house of dip blocks for which you have good luck?

Should I try to construct my own blocks and have a bunch of them? What is the angle at which they need to be made?

Or do I use a piece of brass rod of specific diameter that I can slip beneath the key and to the pin?

Thanks,
Bob Tate.
_________________________
__________
Estonia 190, high-gloss ebony, fully touchweighted and wonderful.

A painter paints his pictures on canvas. But musicians paint their pictures on silence.

PTG member. BA in music theory; graduate work in musicology, voice & piano major instruments.

Top
(ad PTG 568) Grand Action Regulation in 37 Steps
Grand Action Regulation in 37 Steps
#1982993 - 11/05/12 11:28 AM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
Supply Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/11/06
Posts: 3919
Loc: Vancouver Island, BC, Canada
Bob,
you say you "want to set a dip that works well". It doesn't really matter where you measure - at the pin or at the front of the key. I would set the dip of a few keys so it "works well" and either make your own key dip block that fits that dip, or modify one from a supply house. Hey, you can even get the official Steinway dip block (I believe they are $20 but I haven't looked lately). I carry two dip blocks of different thicknesses.

I modified my key dip block so I can adjust the angle of the "wedge" so that it will match the angle of the depressed key. That way the whole top surface of my dip block is flush and even with the neighboring key when I use it.
_________________________
Jurgen Goering
Piano Forte Supply
www.pianofortesupply.com

Piattino Caster Cups distributor

Top
#1982996 - 11/05/12 11:36 AM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21513
Loc: Oakland
The problem with key dip is that there is no universal method of measuring it. It depends on where you measure it on the key, and that is not always specified. People get to arguing over increments that are less than the amount that it can vary depending on where it is measured.

You can make key dip blocks from old keys from a junker piano, or just cut blocks of wood. Everyone in this business needs a little woodworking knowledge, and this is a good starter project.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

Top
#1982997 - 11/05/12 11:42 AM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: BDB]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1309
Loc: Michigan
Originally Posted By: BDB
The problem with key dip is that there is no universal method of measuring it. It depends on where you measure it on the key, and that is not always specified. People get to arguing over increments that are less than the amount that it can vary depending on where it is measured.

You can make key dip blocks from old keys from a junker piano, or just cut blocks of wood. Everyone in this business needs a little woodworking knowledge, and this is a good starter project.


The whole idea of a dip block doesn't make sense to me -- since you might need so many different ones. Just get the Schaff tool that is universally adjustable for a range of dip measurements. It will set dip for both white and black keys and also set key level for the blacks. I think it is still listed as a Jaras tool.
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

Top
#1983000 - 11/05/12 11:47 AM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2373
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
As BDB mentions there's no universal standard for where to measure. The important thing is that its done the same for all the keys. I have a couple lines drawn across the top of mine which is home made. Its just two triangle shaped blocks that come together as a square with a small screw in a slot to adjust it. I put the front of the block lined up with the front of the key and then check the height there or at one of the lines farther back. You will find that the reading varies depending on how hard you press down and having consistant pressure probably makes more of a difference than where you are looking at on the block.
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

Top
#1983001 - 11/05/12 11:53 AM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
beethoven986 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/20/09
Posts: 3336
I use the Wessell, Nickel, and Gross version of this tool: http://mazzagliatools.com/DipInfoPage.html

However, if I had known this version existed before I bought mine, I would have bought this one instead. My standard dip is 10mm.

Also, 1.5mm for aftertouch? Really? That's about .060".... excessively large IMO.
_________________________
B.Mus. Piano Performance 2009
M.Mus. Piano Performance & Literature 2011
PTG Associate Member
Certified Dampp-Chaser installer

Top
#1983004 - 11/05/12 11:59 AM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
rysowers Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 2402
Loc: Olympia, WA
The other major variable on setting key block is the amount of pressure applied. You can radically effect results by using either lighter or firm pressure, depending on how squishy the front rail punching is. Some technicians use a weight in order to get more consistency.

Another popular modification is to screw a cross piece on the top of the key dip block that will click on the neighboring keys when depressed. Balance punchings can be added or subtracted to calibrate the dip block for more or less dip.

Wessel Nickle & Gross has one that is weighted and adjustable:

If the keyboard is well leveled, a Jaras plunger type tool works pretty well to, and it too can be calibrated for deeper or shallower dip.
_________________________
Ryan Sowers,
Pianova Piano Service
Olympia, WA
www.pianova.net

Top
#1983006 - 11/05/12 12:08 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
Mark Cerisano, RPT Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/24/10
Posts: 1258
Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Because proper aftertouch is a function of so many different and varying things, you cannot have even aftertouch without something else being uneven. In an upright, jack/butt alignment is all over the place with no adjustment possible. Hammer distance is also not individually adjustable. Also, there is uneven wear on all the felt parts. So striving for consistent key dip has to result in uneveness in other areas. My feeling is that at a high level of precision, aftertouch is more noticeable than key dip. For that reason, I try to get a consensus on a few sample notes, of what key dip works for this piano, resulting in good repetition, volume, sensitivity, and most importantly - aftertouch, (given a set and desired hammer distance and letoff) then try to match all the other keydips. Then, if some keys do not feel right (after touch) I might alter key dip for that one note. Once you can feel aftertouch, you will accept uneven key dip (which shouldn't be noticeabe at the small variations I am suggesting) over uneven aftertouch. So, when choosing, determining, and setting key dip, just make sure you do it the same way on each key, in order to reproduce the key dip that worked in your samples (but probably won't work, i.e. give consistent after touch) for all the keys.
_________________________
Mark Cerisano, RPT
www.howtotunepianos.com

Top
#1983008 - 11/05/12 12:23 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21513
Loc: Oakland
You can adjust hammer distance individually on a vertical action if the hammer rail felt is not glued at the top. You can shim under the felt.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

Top
#1983015 - 11/05/12 12:29 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
Dave B Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/01/11
Posts: 1968
Loc: Philadelphia area
The angle of the key will be different for different key lengths. Supply's adjustable key dip block is a great idea. (Not sure how it's done).

When regulating key travel, I base my adjustments to having the key level at mid stroke. I usually measure from the front of the key, not from the lip of the key top. Consistency is easily maintained as the key is depressed, the key dip block can be matched to the front of the adjacent keys by feel or sight.

Top
#1983020 - 11/05/12 12:43 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2373
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
The after touch is just a mechanical safety measure to ensure proper functioning of the action. Its proper setting prevents jack jamming on the rep window cusion or double striking on the strings. On uprights it facilitates positive checking as Reblitz mentions.

Although pianists can "feel" after touch, its presence, or lack of (if this were possible) does not effect sound off the piano diddly as far as what a pianist can do with it. If there was a way to achieve that safety measure without it , it wouldn't be there for pianists to fawn over how they prefer it (wide or narrow)as far as "feel" is concerned.

(Added) Incidently, Ted did mention a lot of subtle things and sometimes not so subtle things which pianists request from technicians as far as working on the piano. He also mentioned that its up to us as technicians to stand our ground if its malarky. In the same way that not all techs are accomplished pianists, the vice versa is also true.


Edited by Emmery (11/05/12 08:13 PM)
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

Top
#1983144 - 11/05/12 05:32 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
Mark Cerisano, RPT Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/24/10
Posts: 1258
Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Hi Emery,
I have to politely disagree. With no aftertouch, you can not "pick" the notes out of the air. Any pianist who plays on a well regulated piano with even and sufficient aftertouch, can experiment with playing to the "second keyboard" which is a line, just off the bottom of the keybed. Experienced pianists will play "through" to the bottom of the key stroke with the right hand, but play to the second keyboard with the left hand, to achieve a difference in feel, tone, and volume between melody and accompaniment. Ted Sambell most certainly must have taught this at GBC.
You infere that it is not possible to achieve no aftertouch; "if that were possible". It most certainly is possible. Just add a thick paper punching under the key and the note will feel like you are playing a concrete piano. The thud at the bottom, and no feel of where the note speaks, makes the hair stand up on the back of my neck just thinking about it.
If you experiment with the second keyboard on a piano with proper and even aftertouch, you will begin to "fawn" about it as well.
_________________________
Mark Cerisano, RPT
www.howtotunepianos.com

Top
#1983192 - 11/05/12 07:47 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21513
Loc: Oakland
Bl├╝thner actions were designed not to have aftertouch. It is in the regulation specs.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

Top
#1983196 - 11/05/12 07:56 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2373
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
Well Mark, I take things that pianists say with a healthy grain of salt these days. I didn't say that pianists "didn't think it made a difference", I just simply stated a fact that all a pianist can do with tone (outside of use of pedals) via the piano key is control the velocity of the hammer up to the point of escapement. This is just tone variation related to amplitude variation, an unalterable relationship. To this effect, one just needs to play harder or softer. After touch occurs after escapement so nothing you do with it, ie. fully acheiving it or coming up short of it, will change the tone outside of what I mentioned (velocity related). I suppose there is the bottoming thud that occurs when the key bottoms out on a hard stroke, but this too I don't consider pertinant to music and we could live without it. Not sure what you mean with the term "pick the notes out of the air" unless there's maybe a bong involved in the process.

http://blog.twedt.com/archives/222
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

Top
#1983204 - 11/05/12 08:24 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: Emmery]
sunslight Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/25/04
Posts: 106
Loc: Provo, Utah, USA
thanks everyone. i am in the process of modifying the last block i got from Schaff so I have .375 over the pin. the main problem i had, was i set everything (roughing it in)and then found the dip is way to close. the piano still plays but it feel terrible.
Putting on for a moment my pianist hat, Emmery, while I understand what you say, I have to disagree. I think knowing where and how much aftertouch is expected on a piano, greatly enhances the ability to play it. I often have pieces where I have to play so quickly that it happens before the jack has come back under (all the way)and it is somewhat automatic that my fingers come up to where i last felt the jack escape and the key go into aftertouch. I play for just before (it is almost a thought process rather than feel) the key went into aftertouch for the next sound. This will also produce an extemely quiet sound, very ethereal. I much rather adjust for a consistent AT than dip. Although I certainly like an even dip, I use the feel of the AT to tell me where I am after escapement.
and Yes, 1.5mm. is a little much and makes lots of lost energy, but for me, it is easier when playing some music. In general, I like a feel more along 1.2mm (.047"). --I know some pianists like hardly any, but I think (as long as it is within reason) it is what is liked by the pianist, so, I recant my 1.5 mm, ha.
Still--for me, the feel of the same key dip is not nearly as important as knowing how much there is and expecting the same aftertouch on every key. It is my guide, especially when playing softly.
Thanks again everyone.
Some of this is my own fault for using a new dip block that I had not tested. I had no idea they would send me a block that was set for 3/8 at the front.
& thanks for all the ideas on how to construct blocks.
Bob
_________________________
__________
Estonia 190, high-gloss ebony, fully touchweighted and wonderful.

A painter paints his pictures on canvas. But musicians paint their pictures on silence.

PTG member. BA in music theory; graduate work in musicology, voice & piano major instruments.

Top
#1983216 - 11/05/12 09:34 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2373
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
sunlight I understand what your saying about the tactile feedback given to a pianist from after touch. I won't elaborate on my views of what they think they are doing with it as far as music goes. I know a lot of great pianists that don't even know what after touch is. I am pretty sure if the actions were made in such a way that aftertouch was not necessary for mechanical reasons in acoustic pianos, I doubt piano manufacturers would bother to simulate it simply for "feed back reasons".

Even various digital instruments and synthesizers incorporated "after touch" beginning in the late 70's (CS80) but these actually effected the sound dynamics if one pressed the key all the way down with x amount of pressure, not for some tactile feedback to the pianist.
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

Top
#1983264 - 11/06/12 12:04 AM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1309
Loc: Michigan
Quote:
thanks everyone. i am in the process of modifying the last block i got from Schaff so I have .375 over the pin. the main problem i had, was i set everything (roughing it in)and then found the dip is way to close. the piano still plays but it feel terrible


I think you may still be missing what Emmery is trying to get you to see. A given spec is not likely to be magic -- .375" or anything else. (Not that it isn't fine to choose that, too). The point is that hammer travel and key travel have to "fit" each other. In order to achieve aftertouch, you can either make the hammer travel fit the available key travel or make the key travel fit the hammer travel that has been set. Within reason, it doesn't matter a whole lot what the exact numbers turn out to be. What matters to the pianist is primarily the "fit". The quickest way to deal with the issue would be to raise the capstans about 1/4 turn . . .
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

Top
#1983276 - 11/06/12 01:20 AM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: Supply]
Mark R. Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/31/09
Posts: 2002
Loc: Pretoria, South Africa
Originally Posted By: Supply
I modified my key dip block so I can adjust the angle of the "wedge" so that it will match the angle of the depressed key. That way the whole top surface of my dip block is flush and even with the neighboring key when I use it.


Jurgen, could you post a picture of this modified block? I'm very interested... (Alternately, I'd be happy to hear from you via PM.)
_________________________
Autodidact interested in piano technology.

1922 49" Zimmermann, project piano.
1970 44" Ibach, daily music maker.

Top
#1983342 - 11/06/12 08:18 AM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
James Carney Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/30/10
Posts: 440
Loc: new york city
As others said, it's the relationship of key travel to hammer travel that is crucial, rather than just focusing on a spec from a manufacturer or what a given key dip block measures. If you are truly maximizing the potential of a given action you will likely need to change dip ever so slightly for the best results, from one piano to another.

I use the WNG key dip tool and it makes the job go quickly and accurately. The variability and the consistent weight (400 grams) make it superior to wooden blocks. It's heavy so it only comes with me on a regulation job. I carry modified wood blocks for everyday fieldwork/diagnosis.

Attaining consistent keydip - no matter what type of tool used - is first having completely leveled natural keys that are squared and spaced evenly. If the keys aren't truly level from AO - C8 then the key dip won't be consistent either. It also helps immensely if the key bushings and all the rail punchings are in good or better condition too.

With sharp key dip I have experimented with different techniques and really believe that the best method is to set sharp dip according to aftertouch, not with a tool. (Hats off once again to Bill Spurlock.) Like natural key leveling, sharp key leveling is not negotiable, but sharp dip can be for the best results. Again, I do not want any variation in natural key dip from one note to the next.

Last weekend I regulated a 60's M&H A for a great pianist at his studio. As an experiment, I varied key dip punchings in a certain area of the piano and he was able to detect exactly where I had done so, with green punchings. (Those are .005) We determined that he prefers a deeper dip than I do, so I accommodated his wishes by simply increasing hammer blow to get consistent (and less) aftertouch, and the regulation came out great. I never underestimate the intuition of a pianist, and I am also willing to alter the amount of dip from my personal taste to make the player happy.

I find pianos with either inadequate or too much aftertouch every day. If it's correct on every note then someone took pains to make it that way, and those types of setups are a joy to play on. And as another tech above alluded to, something's gotta give in the imperfect world of piano actions. For me, natural key dip must remain consistent, so I will make slight alterations on hammer blow and/or letoff -if need be - on individual notes to attain consistent aftertouch. These types of alterations are so slight that they would be virtually unnoticeable when looking at the hammer line or at the hammers letting off at the strings - almost microscopic refinements.
_________________________
Keyboardist & Composer, Piano Technician
www.jamescarney.net
http://jamescarneypianotuning.wordpress.com/

Top
#1983601 - 11/06/12 11:47 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
John Pels Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/31/07
Posts: 1260
Loc: Tomball, Texas
I use a 10mm dip block as a starting point and seek a uniform aftertouch which as a pianist is more important and perceptible. I like Mark's rationalizations.

Top
#1983619 - 11/07/12 01:13 AM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: Mark R.]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2373
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
Originally Posted By: Mark R.
Originally Posted By: Supply
I modified my key dip block so I can adjust the angle of the "wedge" so that it will match the angle of the depressed key. That way the whole top surface of my dip block is flush and even with the neighboring key when I use it.


Jurgen, could you post a picture of this modified block? I'm very interested... (Alternately, I'd be happy to hear from you via PM.)


Mark if your interested in the angle on top surface of the block its 2.3 degrees for most pianos. This is based on a 9 1/4" length of key from the balance pin to the front and a 3/8" dip. Another way to make the block is to have one end narrower by .025" for every inch of block length.
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

Top
#1983651 - 11/07/12 03:44 AM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
Mark R. Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/31/09
Posts: 2002
Loc: Pretoria, South Africa
Thanks, Emmery.

The numbers you posted give a ratio of 1:25. By my sums, this means that the block should be narrowed not by .025" but by .040" (or 1 mm) for every inch.
_________________________
Autodidact interested in piano technology.

1922 49" Zimmermann, project piano.
1970 44" Ibach, daily music maker.

Top
#1983724 - 11/07/12 10:53 AM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: Mark R.]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2373
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
Originally Posted By: Mark R.
Thanks, Emmery.

The numbers you posted give a ratio of 1:25. By my sums, this means that the block should be narrowed not by .025" but by .040" (or 1 mm) for every inch.


You are correct Mark, my apologies. I had the fraction inverted and was dividing 9.25/.375 instead of the other way around.

My previous point about aftertouch may have been misunderstood. I look at after touch simply as a range of needed reliable mechanical function. That is what its purpose is, and that is what we need to set it for. Being consistant on a setting within that range is also easy to do and if pianists are sensative to it, all the more worthwhile. The safe reliable mechanical function does trump a pianists preferance for feel regardless of who gets blamed. Imagine the horror on a performance if a slow passage is highlighted with double strikes where there sould not be any? Poor checking, double striking or jamming a jack into its cushion is not an option for our work. From a horse and cart perspective, aftertouch came into existance not because pianists asked for it or needed it to do their tonal/touch voodo work with.

We are talking in the range of ~1mm movement, give or take ~half a mm to achieve the desired safety margin. If pianists believe they can tell the difference of +/- the thickness of a piece of paper on a key bottoming out on a relatively squishy punching I got news for them, we don't get much better than that when we eyeball a guage to set it. Personally, I find some pianists more fussy about the density/squishyness of the front punching than the actual amount of aftertouch.

It is possible to move out to the edges of the working range
when setting aftertouch, and to this end we can accomodate a pianists preferance. Its a waste of time and money to start altering action geometry to go beyond that small range in my opinion.

(ADDED) I'll mention something else which hasn't been mentioned by others. Aftertouch also syncs together the initial attack sound of the note with the bottoming of the key. That extra .025"- .055" of key movement occurs in about the same timespan as it takes the sound to reach your ear from the string....~ 2-3 milliseconds.


Edited by Emmery (11/07/12 11:47 AM)
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

Top
#1983728 - 11/07/12 11:04 AM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21513
Loc: Oakland
One could make a block that can adjust to various angles by cutting a slit in the block and using a set screw to change how wide the slit is.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

Top
#1983748 - 11/07/12 12:47 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2373
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
I used to use some home made shims for many years to set aftertouch and now have what I think is a better method. I will set up a few key samples for ideal functioning. After this is set, I have a 14 oz weight set flush with the key front. The weight has a flat lip machined in it that over hangs and a finger type (not plunger) dial indicator tip is set under this lip. The key is dropped until escapement and I check the reading on the dial. Then I let the key settle with the weight and recheck the additional reading on the dial. The heavy steel dial indicator base rides the key slip as I move along. For black keys I do the exact same thing but find its easier to measure the additional uplift on the damper heads after escapement. It saves a little time in the end.

I believe that the bottom of the key surface does not settle the same way on a punching as it does with a shim in there. If you look closely at a used punching there is an uncompressed hump running up the middle of it about the shape of the key mortise. If you doubt that, turn the puching 90 degrees and see how it effects your measurement, you will be surprised. A shim gage will not properly simulate the exact contact area the key makes with the punching. It will also have less area of contact since there is a piece slotted out of the front of it in order to get around the pin.


Edited by Emmery (11/07/12 12:48 PM)
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

Top
#1983796 - 11/07/12 02:34 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
Larry Buck Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/27/04
Posts: 2339
Loc: Lowell MA
Aftertouch is not a "one size fits all".

There is a range of optimal results based on the pianist.

The most important relationship the piano technician has is with the pianist, then the piano.

Aftertouch most definitely effects the sound of the piano.
_________________________
Has Anyone Seen My Glasses ?

E. J. Buck & Sons
Lowell MA 01852
978 458 8688
www.ejbuckpiano.com
facebook.com/E. J. Buck & Sons Performances

Top
#1983798 - 11/07/12 02:39 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: Larry Buck]
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21513
Loc: Oakland
Originally Posted By: Larry Buck
Aftertouch most definitely effects the sound of the piano.



How so? If you reduce or increase the aftertouch, what would be the difference in sound?
_________________________
Semipro Tech

Top
#1983836 - 11/07/12 04:51 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: Larry Buck]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2373
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
Originally Posted By: Larry Buck
Aftertouch is not a "one size fits all".

There is a range of optimal results based on the pianist...


I suppose theres a bit of leeway within the window of mechanical function but I've never set aftertouch less than about .025" or rarely greater than .045". +/- .010" or the thickness of 3 sheets of paper is hardly something that 99% of the pianists would notice a difference on. The cloth/felt punching will compress this amount with just a few ounces more pressure.


Originally Posted By: Larry Buck

The most important relationship the piano technician has is with the pianist, then the piano...


Consider that the next time a customer asks you to stick some thumbtacks into the piano hammers or install some bargain basement pacific rim hammers on a fine grand. The results of our work follow our name and reputation. If you set an unusually wide aftertouch and then in the summer you can't feel that jack toe wiggle a touch with the key down (jammed)....do you think people will blame the pianist or the tech who set it. If the customer and pianist is one in the same, then they will likely inquire why you din't warn them of this possibility. To the same effect, I know of a few refinishers that would sooner drink hemlock or send the business elsewhere if someone asked to have their Steinway painted powder blue.

Originally Posted By: Larry Buck

Aftertouch most definitely effects the sound of the piano.


Never seen any proof of this anywhere. Haven't even heard a good theory on it but I'm all ears if you have one.
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

Top
#1983857 - 11/07/12 05:45 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: Emmery]
Zeno Wood Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/20/07
Posts: 446
Loc: Brooklyn, NY
Anything that affects the touch, and thus the relation between the pianist and the piano, will affect the tone. Really, the person to ask how this plays out, is the pianist. And the pianist won't give an answer in technician lingo. Part of our job is to connect their experience with our technical and non-musical understanding of what's going on. The piano is first and foremost a musical instrument, a means of producing music, which of course is a highly subjective, personal, intuitive, and even emotional endeavor. If you're a musician, especially a pianist, then you have a headstart.
_________________________
Zeno Wood, Piano Technician
Brooklyn College

Top
#1983887 - 11/07/12 07:12 PM Re: Key Dip Block, how do I get/use the right one? [Re: sunslight]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2373
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
True enough Zeno, but one can also say "just vary the velocity of the hammer, you will vary the tone". Outside of pedalling and varying amplitude via the keys, there is nothing else pianists are doing to change the tone.

Now I am referring to conventional piano playing above. Chick Corea, Jonhn Cage, the Piano Guys and other experimental players will incorporate techniques and other objects to partially mute or manipulate the strings and soundboard for tonal changes.

In the same light, the music itself, its structure, chording, melody ect...will interact by way of resonance and harmonics to produce an overall tonal change but this again is completely different.
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

Top
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >

Moderator:  Piano World 
What's Hot!!
HOW TO POST PICTURES on the Piano Forums
-------------------
Sharing is Caring!
About the Buttons
-------------------
Forums Rules & Help
-------------------
ADVERTISE
on Piano World

The world's most popular piano web site.
-------------------
PIANO BOOKS
Interesting books about the piano, pianists, piano history, biographies, memoirs and more!
(ad) HAILUN Pianos
Hailun Pianos - Click for More
ad (Casio)
Celviano by Casio Rebate
Ad (Seiler/Knabe)
Knabe Pianos
Sheet Music
(PW is an affiliate)
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad) Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restoration
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Questions for those that use dremel for hammer shaping.
by UnrightTooner
09/17/14 07:29 AM
Pianoteq vs Digital Piano vs Acoustic Piano
by wildpig
09/16/14 11:57 PM
Baldwin Hamilton 1941
by JMN12
09/16/14 11:13 PM
Tucson, AZ: Is Arizona Room a bad place for a piano?
by Paul678
09/16/14 08:14 PM
Kissin plays...
by JoelW
09/16/14 07:33 PM
Who's Online
78 registered (ando, Alex75001, barbaram, 36251, 25 invisible), 994 Guests and 15 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
76224 Members
42 Forums
157573 Topics
2314570 Posts

Max Online: 15252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM
(ads by Google)

Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
|
Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World | Donate | Link to Us | Classifieds |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | Press Room |


copyright 1997 - 2014 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission